Many of our buildings in the United States are built on solid foundations made of steel. Although steel is sturdy, durable and strong, it still can be compromised by rust. The integrity of the steel structure can be threatened when rust settles into the joints and the steel itself. This process could affect the building’s structural integrity.
This means that steel isn’t always the best option when it comes to building materials. This could impact all parts of the building, including its foundation. However, there are solutions to this issue and a process called hot dip galvanization is one of them. Here’s more information:
What is Hot Dip Galvanization?
As a variation of the regular galvanizing procedure, HDG works to protect the carbon steel used in building. The surface of the steel would first be chemically cleaned. Then it is covered in a hot-dip galvanization in a large vat that contains hot melted zinc. The zinc reaches temperatures of 840 degrees F.
The carbon steel for buildings is 90% iron, and the melted zinc bonds well with the iron. Once cooled the steel has a permanent coating of protection against corrosion and rust.
Why Use to Repair Foundations?
Concrete piers are still used by some contractors to repair foundations but galvanized steel is the best solution to use for foundation problems. The benefits of using galvanized steel are that the hot-dip galvanizing will give you longer protection in steel structures. It can keep the steel from rusting and corrosion for as long as 50 years or more.
When galvanizing the steel, the bonding also gets into all the crevices, edges and any corners. You will end up with uniformed protection against rust and corrosion.,The bond that coats the steel is tight and it will lessen the risk of other damages being done to the foundation due to external forces.
A foundation that has been repaired with the galvanized coating will have low maintenance, saving you in upkeep expenses. The process for hot-dip galvanizing is a fast application and only takes a few hours. The product is ready to use for installation almost immediately after cooling.
What are the Disadvantages for Foundation Repair?
Hot dip galvanized steel is not always the best choice. When it is mixed with yellow brass, dezincification can be triggered on the galvanized steel. The use of galvanized steel should not be used for underground purposes unless the proper coverage is used. That makes it inconvenient to be used for many different jobs.
If using steel piers to repair your foundation, you need to make sure that your contractor puts your piles deep enough into the ground. If the steel piers do not reach solid ground, then they could shift. Most people feel that steel foundation repairs are better than concrete. Concrete cannot be put as deep into the ground as a steel pier, and concrete will not last as long.
If used underground considerable defects could be hidden in the zinc coating that covered the steel. These defects could lead to corrosion and rusting of the steel.
The cost of repairing a foundation is already high without adding the expense of hot-dip galvanization to the piers needed to raise the foundation. Many homeowners will rather save the money and use ungalvanized steel.
Homeowners should look at foundation repairs as a long-term investment that will improve their home. Spending the extra on hot-dip galvanization will make the repairs last longer.